Gangs don’t typically victimize average citizens. Gang members usually prey on other gang members or people associated with them. Does this mean Austinites shouldn’t be concerned about the rise in gangs around the city? Absolutely not.
Gang-connected crimes are most often linked to drugs. The more gangs we have battling it out for drug territory, the more overall violence our city will experience and the more expenses we will all carry as the local criminal justice system is overloaded.
This article from the American Statesmen points out that Austin experienced a 65% increase in gang related crimes. It also states there are more and more gang members within the city. The reasons are unclear but the results remain the same.
Being involved in a gang is not something easily walked away from. Like many law breakers, gang members find it difficult to live a clean life. Unlike most other criminals, however, for some gang members, leaving the lifestyle is impossible.
As the report states, drug crimes are those most often associated with gangs. Gangs are powerful and many are quite wealthy. They can be thought of as complex businesses that profit mostly off of the illegal drug trade.
Drug charges in Texas can carry stiff penalties but prison time isn’t the best answer for someone looking to leave the lifestyle behind. The gangs that exist on the streets are typically just as active behind prison walls.
Facing drug charges can be difficult but made easier with the help of an experienced criminal defense lawyer. Depending on your history, your case may qualify for a “diversion” program in Texas. Call me to discuss the specifics of your case today.